I've had a year with 3 chickens and have an enclosed garden with the coop and small run inside. I have been opening it and letting them run around a pretty large garden for awhile. I think since it's got a little cold in MD the hawks are finally getting desperate enough. I looked outside and saw feathers flying... unfortunately I don't have a gun, but I ran out with a samurai sword and I found a immature red tailed hawk eating the neck my poor chicken.. he stayed on it til I was about 5 feet away. I didn't identify the bird until I had secured my other 2 chickens and went back inside. Anyway I found out it was an endangered species and luckily my other two hid in an old coop and in a corner of the garden. The hawk watched from afar on a branch across the street as I cleaned up my chickens body into a trash bag. I did manage to get the other chickens back in the coop and closed the run and they are fine now. Being as late as it is near winter I know I can't get another chicken that will survive the MD winters. I'm just glad their are still 2 left. Now that the hawk knows there is food here, I'm really sad they can't run around and forage in my garden. What can I do? 1. Shoot the hawk with an air rifle from my neighbor (is that legal? I was told if it's eating your livestock you can?) I'm seeing him daily since a few days ago. 2. Leave them in the coop 24/7 with the run and just deal with my new visitor? (They look sad and I feel like they pacing around and looking for the other chicken or just want to get out like they were usually allowed to be) 3. Add some nets over the top of the area so they can run free? Follow up questions: How hard would it be to introduce a new chicken in the spring? and/or with a rooster to help protect (don't know how my neighbors will feel about the noise)? I've heard about hanging CD's around the fence, but the aerial cover is more what I'm concerned about. I also have a family of cardinals that have been living in my trees for years and I love having them around in the winter, what can I do that won't scare these birds away?